The Holiday Season! A time filled with family gatherings, social outings and…heavy calorie consumption. Along with all the joy and cheer, the holiday season brings an abundance of rich foods, sweet treats and high caloric cocktails. Looking for ways to enjoy the season without weight gain?

Here are 4 Tips to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain:

  1. Give yourself a break. Let’s be real for a minute. This time of year, with all its love and magic, can also be a very stressful time. If you find yourself striving for perfection, you’re not alone. The holiday season is when most of us over extend ourselves. Finding the perfect gifts for our loved ones, decorating our homes, planning the PTA holiday party – all the extra responsibility can leave you emotionally depleted. Many manage that depletion by “filling up” with high-carbohydrate foods and/or alcohol. Step back, think about what’s most important to you — let the rest go.
  2. We can’t say it enough — preparation is the key to weight management. Take time each day to think about your food choices and access to healthy foods. If you’ll be out shopping all day, pack a healthy lunch so you’re not tempted by a drive-thru. If you’ll be attending a holiday party, eat ahead of time so you don’t indulge in heavy appetizers, sweets and alcoholic beverages. If your get together is pot luck, bring a healthy dish to share.
  3. Get moving. Make a pact with yourself that you will move every day. Find the farthest parking spot from the mall rather than fighting for the closest. If you can brave the frigid temperatures, take a walk outdoors. Connecting with nature can be incredibly calming. It’s the perfect time to evaluate your priorities in life and remember the reason for the season.
  4. Follow the 80/20 rule. You’ve heard it before: “Everything in moderation.” Some experts say that moderation helps with weight management and creates a healthier relationship with food. One way to practice moderation is to follow the 80/20 rule. 80% of the time, focus on eating healthy – lean protein, fruits and vegetables and healthy fats. 20% of the time, feel free to indulge. For example, if you eat 3 meals per day, or 21 meals per week, approximately 4 of your weekly meals can include an indulgence. Maybe it’s a glass of wine, a slice of pumpkin pie or Grandma’s infamous Oyster Stuffing? Whatever it is, plan for that 20% and enjoy it!

At Weightloss, we provide patients with effective, realistic nutrition guidance. Patients receive the tools, education and empowerment to improve overall health and navigate challenging times like the holiday season. Our patients are prescribed a diet comprised of lean protein, low glycemic index fruits and vegetables and healthy fats. A discussion of your individual goals and history, a full comprehensive blood panel, EKG, and body fat analysis are combined with counseling for diet and exercise. Weekly, individual consultations with a member of our medical team will help you to stay focused every step of the way. While you will receive information focused on nutrition, lifestyle and exercise, the benefits go far beyond simple weight loss and will provide you with the tools you need for long-term weight management.

Paula Lawrence